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Subject: Excel binding

Excel binding

From: Richard Frieder <frieder>
Date: Friday, April 12, 1991
Peter Jermann's comments on Excel binding touched on one of my hobby
horses:  squares on the bottom edges of books.  For years I have been
surprised at how little interest there seems to be n the preservation
community in doing away with, or at least limiting, this practice. Peter
describes the structural contradiction very well.  I have advocated
limiting the use of a bottom sqaure ever since I learned in a Chris
Clarkson class at Columbia's summer rare book school that having the
square is basically an oversight of history.  Centuries ago the
transition was made from commonly storing books flat on their side to
storing them upright on their bottom edge.  It apparently occurred to no
one that doing so created a problem waiting to happen because of the
bottom square.

Our commercial binder will bind books with no bottom square upon request
at an additional charge.  When we discussed the possibility of making
this option the rule rather than the exception, the response was that if
10-15% of the binder's business was requested with no bottom square it
could be worked into the flow of the bindery to the point where an
additional charge would not be necessary.  I called a numberofthe
binder's other large customers thinking that collectively we could
easily achieve 10-15%, and found a uniform lack of interest across the
board.  The idea died a quick death.  I'd be interested in other's
thoughts.  Thanks.

Richard Frieder
Preservation Department
Northwestern University Library
frieder [at] nuacvm__acns__nwu__edu_

                  Conservation DistList Instance 4:55
                  Distributed: Sunday, April 21, 1991
                        Message Id: cdl-4-55-001
Received on Friday, 12 April, 1991

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